Acne is a chronic skin condition that causes pimples, whiteheads, blackheads and spots on different parts of the body such as the face, neck, shoulders, chest and arms. These aren’t a serious threat, but they can cause scarring. It is common during puberty as oil glands are active during their period, but it’s not necessary, and any age group can suffer from it. Sometimes, it can cause pain and swelling.
The symptoms might change from one person to another. Here are some of the common ones:
- blackheads: When oil and dead skin accumulate inside a pore, it widens the skin pore, and we see a blackhead emerging.
- Whiteheads: Similar to blackheads these are also formed when dead skin, oil and dirt collect inside a pore.
- Pimple: The bacteria flourish inside a pore which has oil and dead skin accumulated in it; hence, inflammation occurs and a pimple forms.
- Cysts: When the inflammation reaches deep inside the skin pores, it forms cysts.
Some of the common reasons that cause acne are:
- hormonal levels.
- Some medicines.
- Wearing pore-clogging makeup.
- Surplus oil production.
- Clogged hair follicles by the accumulation of oil and dirt.
- Diets including a high amount of carbohydrates such as slices of bread, chips and milk.
- Stress can worsen acne.
The treatment can differ according to the severity of the condition. Some of the treatments are:
- Mild acne is treated with the help of over the counter(OTC) medication, for instance, gels, soaps, creams and lotions.
- The mild medication treatment consists of active ingredients such as Resorcinol, salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, Retin A and Azelaic acid.
- In moderate to severe cases, OTC and oral medication are used. Some of them are:
- Corticosteroid injection: If an inflamed cyst bursts, the doctor will inject a diluted corticosteroid to help with recovery and prevent scarring.
- Oral antibiotics: These fight against the growth of bacteria and reduce inflammation.
- Topical antimicrobials: A topical retinoid is prescribed as it unclogs the pores and prevents blackheads and whiteheads.
- Isotretinoin: It is a strong retinoid which is used only in severe cases of cystic acne. This medication can lead to severe side effects.